2016 Blind Spot Series: JFK


Since I fell behind on this last month I'm hoping to do two of these in September.

What I knew going in: The plot

The film follows New Orleans DA Jim Garrison (Kevin Costner) as he attempts to prove that the murder of President John F. Kennedy was a conspiracy that involved more than one shooter. 

We're all to the point where we kind of at least believe there was a conspiracy, right? That alone made me interested in checking this out. One thing I didn't notice before I put this movie on my Blind Spot list...it's over three hours long. THREE + hours of Kevin Costner whom I barely tolerate as it is. I suddenly started dreading this a bit. I attempted to watch it on an airplane (Which I found out later when I got the DVD in the mail was actually heavily edited so I had to start over anyways) and one minute I'm watching a long Kennedy montage, then the next "We're now beginning our descent into...." Whoops. (but bonus: I NEVER sleep on planes)

Anyways, I psyched myself up for this movie in the worst way and it ended up being pretty interesting. It's certainly way too long, but it wasn't as hard as I was expecting it to be. That being said, I am confused on its "masterpiece" status.

How did this get editing and cinematography Oscars? There's some parts that I feel are very masterful, but others that were so choppy it was almost distracting.

How did Tommy Lee Jones end up with an Oscar nomination? He literally does nothing of note. Kevin Bacon, in my opinion was the best actor in this film. Was it because Jones playing an allegedly gay character was ground breaking at the time? I'm scratching my head over that one. 

Coster, despite how much I normally dislike him was actually very good. He kept my attention during this marathon of a movie. Gary Oldman was also impressive as Lee Harvey Oswald. 

Don't get me wrong, JFK is a good film, but I stop myself from calling it "great" or even something I'd consider watching again. 

Recommended: Yes

Grade: C+

Memorable Quote: "Back, and to the left." - Jim Garrison (Kevin Costner)

11 comments:

  1. I'm always fascinated by the films about JFK assassination, I even watched Parkland which takes place at Dallas' Parkland Hospital on that very day. I haven't seen this one and generally I'm fine w/ Kevin Costner, but Oliver Stone is a hit and miss.

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    1. JFK's assassination is pretty fascinating. I also saw Parkland but didn't care for it. I felt like they tried to do what Bobby did, but failed.

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  2. Hehe, I love how gleeful you are here!
    I just watched Jackie and LBJ, bookends to this story. Kind of made me want to watch Bobby again but oddly enough, not this one ;)

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    1. See, I really liked Bobby even if it was about a bunch of randoms. I'd take that film over this one.

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  3. I do think it's an amazing film although it does go overlong at times. It is still better than the fucking movie about the Doors. God, that is one of the worst fucking films I had ever seen in my life.

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    1. Don't. It's full of inaccuracies, exaggerations, half-truths, and a bunch of things that didn't portray the band fairly as they themselves hated the film.

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  4. This movie is a master class in both cinematography and editing in every way if you ask me. It is flashy as hell and means it. This movie, when I saw it many years ago as a budding cinephile, taught me things about movies, made me understand the craft in ways I'd never dreamed of. The scene where they discuss Oswald's past at that restaurant intercut with the Time Magazine cover is being "created". It's my single favorite movie scene of all-time. "We're through the looking-glass here, people."

    I agree on Jones. Not a bad performance. But not that special. He was just really popular at the time, I think. Bacon, Asner, Lemmon, and Pesci (especially Pesci) truly steal the show as far as the supporting cast is concerned. Costner (who I always love) and Oldman straight carry it. Sissy Spacek is also perfectly cast.

    I'm obsessed with the subject matter, and that has always helped this film for me as well. I am on the "JFK is a bonafide masterpeice" team.

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    1. Aww I'm glad you are! I just couldn't get behind it in that form.

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  5. I still have to see this film and I am one who has watched many documentaries on this blatant murder. I am one who does believe there was someone else and Oswald was the perfect scapegoat. The problem for me was Oliver Stone because this was at the height of his own grandeur so I was put off by it. I keep wanting to rent it but I know it's long. You gave a great review.

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    1. I didn't realize how long it was when I threw it on my Blind Spot list, that was quite the surprise lol

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